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Friday, February 26, 2016

A Poem in Perl

Note from the Poet: Perl is a computer language that programmers are able to write poetry in, due to the large number of available commands.  It’s a game to try to write something that makes sense and also compiles. I’ve wanted to write some Perl poetry for years. This poem actually runs (and doesn’t do anything).

# The first need is to free ourselves of that worst form of contemporary obscurantism. -FAH
# Perl code can be treacherously obfuscated. -Larry Wall, inventor of Perl
for (each %western_democracies) {
    if (require state) {
        FREEDOM::dump unless reverse;
        while ($you != $me) {    
            push @people, %minority_will;
            bind MEN, POLITICS;   
            close $markets and unlink BUYER, SELLER;    
            exit DEMOCRACY and bless SOCIALISM;
        do not sleep; do not wait && wait && wait until time;
        do alarm; do join my $cause, %values; do split /power/;
        listen YOU, EVERYONE or "serfdom";

  • Rachel Lomasky is an analytics manager at Opera Solutions and an adjunct professor at Northeastern University.  She writes a lot of code, but this is her first published poem.